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The big news, as far as the media are concerned, is the political game of debt-ceiling chicken that is being played by Democrats and Republicans in Washington. But, however much the media are focused on what is happening inside the Beltway, there is a whole country outside the Beltway – and the time is long overdue to start thinking about what is best for the rest of the country, not just for right now but for the long haul. However the current debt-ceiling crisis turns out, the current economic turmoil in financial markets around the world should cause some serious thoughts about the long run, and about the whole idea of a national debt-ceiling. Some people may have been shocked when the credit-rating firm Moody’s recently suggested that the debt-ceiling law be repealed, in order to avoid fiscal crises which can throw world financial markets into turmoil that can injure countries around the world. Anyone who wants to show that Moody’s is wrong should be prepared to show the actual benefits of the debt-ceiling, not its goals or hopes. That will not be easy, if possible at all. Too many policies, programs and institutions are judged by what they are supposed to do, rather than by what they actually do and the consequences of their actions. The United Nations, for example, survives as a glorious idea, despite how corrupt, counterproductive and even dangerous its actions are. The national debt-ceiling law should be judged by what it actually does, not by how good an idea it seems to be. The one thing that the national debt-ceiling has never done is to put a ceiling on the rising national debt. Time and time again, for years on end, the national debt-ceiling has been raised whenever the national debt gets near whatever the current ceiling might be. Regardless of what it is supposed to do, what the national debt-ceiling actually does is enable any administration to get all the political benefits of runaway spending for the benefit of their favorite constituencies – and then invite the opposition party to share the blame, by either raising the national debt ceiling, or by voting for unpopular cutbacks in spending or increases in taxes. The Obama administration is a classic example. When all its skyrocketing spending bills were being rushed through Congress without even being read, the Democrats had such overwhelming major-

I opinion I 3




l e tt e r s t o t h e e d i t o r Reclaim the nation

that prays, but obviously not nearly often enough) that the citizens of this country realize, the sooner the better, that politicians, media stars, et al do not give a hoot about anything but their own self serving interests. We had better begin to elect politicians that are patriots that believe in the Constitution of our nation not how we meld with the rest of the world. We should be the envy of the world not the scapegoat, whipping boy and financier of the world. We need to destroy the regality that has become political office. We will have to take back the responsibility for our own lives, the lives of our family, the condition of our local community, the governance of our various municipalities and states, and the return of the concept of less government at all levels. It follows that one builds on the other. A person of character is more likely to have a family of character in a community of character living in a municipality, state and country where character is a given. I am of an age where a politician or a media star could not afford a scandal for fear of losing their position. We have come a long way from the time when a divorced person could not get elected to a time when the President of the greatest country in the world has sex (no matter the definition) in the oval office with an intern and becomes an international hero (of sorts). Those who fail to learn from history, or rewrite it to suit their agenda are doomed, not to repeat history, but simply doomed. There is a movement to reclaim this great nation. I hope it is not too late to succeed.

To the editor: I am constantly amazed by this publication and some editorials and letters to the editor that get published. Thomas Sowell constantly is battling reality versus perception (or maybe propaganda?) If I have learned anything in my life, it is that truth will never overcome the perception of truth that individuals seek. I had a professor lecture on three wars that have been going on since the beginning of recorded time and will never end. Namely, the war between the classes (the haves and the wish they had), the sexes (currently men, women, lesbian gay transgender, but open to expansion as the need arises) and the war between the races (in this country primarily whites and blacks or whatever the acceptable term is at the time). All one has to do is listen to a politician, professor or commentator and this is what is being expounded the majority of the time. As Mr. Sowell so eloquently writes in this editions article, the current debate on taxes and spending is not about economics. It is about class warfare or “tax cuts for the rich”. The debate on terrorist attacks is not about who have committed the various attacks, but the unfairness of profiling. Criminal activity cannot be seriously addressed until we acknowledge who is committing the crimes the vast majority of the time. The war between the sexes is clearly exhibited by the latest ruling in New York legitimizing gay marriage. Logic tells us that none of the diatribe going on has anything to do with reality. Historically, low taxes have stimulated the economy. Keynesian economics does not Ken Ferguson work like the free market. Keynes was one St. Peters of those involved in the armistice at the end of World War I that led to World War II. This fact doesn’t get promoted much in Symbols the era subsequent to the two wars. All of the discourse regarding the love To the editor: and marriage of someone other than a man Your cover story (MRN, July 20, 2011) or wife is mostly malarkey. The talk is of the renewed community spirit of the about healthcare benefits, inheritance laws, O’Fallon City councilmen was encouraggovernment benefits, etc. All of which can ing. However your depiction of the peace be overcome without destroying the mar- symbol superimposed over the symbol for riage between a man and woman. A ratio- O’Fallon City Hall does not, in my opinion, nal man can see all of this as a means to represent their unity, harmony and peacechange the current society of an increas- making efforts. ingly declining morality to one of no I was made aware of the true history morality. Why? Because it is to the advan- of this peace symbol by a pamphlet writtage of the immoral to have to acceptable ten by David E. Gumaer, entitled “Peace moral code. Symbols, The Truth About Those Strange I hope and pray (yes, I am a Christian Designs.” He notes that this symbol was

used throughout history, dating back to Emperor Nero, representing Simon Peter’s crucifixion (upside down) on the cross. This symbol was called the “Nero Cross”, the sign of the “Broken Jew” or the symbol of the “anti-Christ.” Gumaer states that “It was found in anti-Christian manuscripts, in witchcraft, black magic, paganism and Satanism. Marquis de Concressault wrote, “This symbol was painted on the doors of churches, closed by the Bolsheviks in Russia....It was branded on the bodies of Gypsies and Jews during the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39.” The satanic Anton LeVey (from San Francisco) used it in his Black Mass. In 1950 the symbol was adopted by Bertrand Russell, a Marxist. Sen. Strom Thurmond stated that Russell’s program “is designed to manipulate students with pro Communist, anti Christian views. Communists Hugh Brock and Pat Arrowsmith adopted this symbol in 1969. Both were involved in Communist enterprises in Europe. Symbols have always played an important role in our culture. I feel privileged to have been made aware of Mr. Gumaer’s researched pamphlet and take every opportunity to share this information with others. More and more we see this symbol cropping up on clothing, jewelry, purses, etc. It does not represent the true peace and harmony that we desire for our city officials and others in government.


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Lapse in judgment To the editor: I’m writing in response to Rob Shultz’s letter to the editor, regarding New York’s legalizing gay marriage. I am a strong believer in free speech, however, I find it disturbing you would choose to print a letter that is filled with hate speech.   I’m pretty sure if Mr. Schultz had written the same letter about any other minority in this county, it would not have made it to print in your “letters to the editor”.  Maybe you were just desperate for responses to your article?   Unfortunately, I really think this was a terrible lapse in judgment on your part. An apology to the gay community in your area would the least you could do. Nichole DiGiuseppi 

754 Spirit 40 Park Drive Chesterfield, MO 63005 (636) 591-0010 ■ (636) 591-0022 Fax Please send Comments, Letters and Press Releases to: Mid Rivers Newsmagazine is published 25 times per year by 21 Publishing LLC. It is direct-mailed to more than 61,000 households in St. Charles County. Products and services advertised are not necessarily endorsed by Mid Riverts Newsmagazine and views expressed in editorial copy are not necessarily those of Mid Rivers Newsmagazine. No part of Mid Rivers Newsmagazine may be reproduced in any form without prior written consent from Mid Rivers Newsmagazine. All letters addressed to Mid Rivers Newsmagazine or its editor are assumed to be intended for publication and are subject to editing for content and length. Mid Rivers Newsmagazine reserves the right to refuse any advertisement or editorial submission. © Copyright 2011.

New Hope for CHildreN with Autism Spectrum disorder, Add and AdHd • Highly Trained Medical Staff • Advanced Individualized Treatment Options • Most Medical Insurance Plans Accepted • Genetic Consultation • Review of Medical records and clinical examination • Psychiatric diagnostic examination • Order laboratory testing According to a Centers for Disease Control (CDC) survey published in 2007, all forms of autism now affect 1 in 150 children in the U.S. today. If you contrast this with the incidence reported in the early 1990’s, 1 in 10,000 Children, this increase is alarming. Given its prevalence, autism is now more common than childhood cancer, diabetes, Down’s Syndrome and HIV. Many will tell you that the cause for autism is due to generalized “genetics.” Worse, they’ll imply there is no cure – or, at least no protocol that can provide families with hope. There is HOPE now! Call us for an evaluation. To learn more about the biological basis of autism and treatment success by Genetic Consultants, read “Sacred Spark,” Rev Lisa Sykes’ account of her son’s improvement.

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News Br iefs St. Charles Rock a bye baby The Crisis Nursery St. Charles is looking for volunteers to play with children. Located across from SSM St. Joseph Health Center, Crisis Nursery is a not-forprofit agency that provides a short-term, safe haven for more than 7,200 children a year whose families are faced with an emergency or crisis. The agency is seeking volunteers to rock babies, give one-on-one attention to the children — birth through age 12 — and help with household chores and maintenance. Volunteers are also invited to join the Crisis Nursery Best Friends, which assists with events and administrative tasks. “The St. Louis Crisis Nurseries are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year,” said CEO DiAnne Mueller. “We never close because abuse has no closing time. We are only able to help these children and families because of the wonderful support of the community and our volunteers.” For more information on volunteering, contact MaryPat at 887-3072.

Man robs gas station Police are still looking for a man suspected of robbing the Phillips 66 gas station in St. Charles on July 21.

The suspect displayed a hand gun when he entered the store at 10:44 a.m. He then made a customer and clerk lay on the floor before leaving with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Senior event St. Charles County seniors can take advantage of free health screenings and musical entertainment at the seventh annual Silver & Gold Healthy Living Senior Fair. The fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tues., Aug. 9, at the St. Charles Convention Center. The free event will feature more than 100 vendors with products and services of interest to the St. Charles Senior Community. “Last year’s fair attracted more than a thousand attendees,” said Lisa Baue, president of Baue Funeral Homes, Crematory and Cemetery. “We saw seniors in our community, adult children, caregivers, and professionals benefiting from this fair. The products and services the vendors provide to our senior community are exceptional. I encourage anyone who is a senior or who cares for seniors to attend this free event.” Fair attendees will be able to take advantage of a variety of free health screenings and enjoy free entertainment including music in the main lobby before the event,

the YMCA Silver Sneakers, the St. Charles West High School Marching Band and the St. Louis Strutters. In addition, Dr. Joseph Flaherty, a partner at Saint Louis University’s Division of Geriatric Medicine, will be the guest speaker at 1 p.m. For more information, call 946-4042.

Teens caught with paint Two teens were taken into custody and released on July 20 in reference to more paint found on the highway near Francis Howell High School. Deputies were called to the intersection of Hwy. 94 and Hwy. DD at 12:56 a.m. in response to a suspicious person in the area. “(The deputy) observed a large amount of fresh paint, paint rollers and paint buckets in the roadway,” said Lt. Craig McGuire with the St. Charles County Sheriff’s Department. McGuire said two white males ran eastbound from the scene through an open field. The deputy observed two vehicles parked at Lake No. 9, near Francis Howell High School. When the deputy looked inside the vehicles, he saw paint supplies. The two vehicles were towed and the owners were called. When the teens’ parents arrived the

teens turned themselves in. Deputies believe additional people are involved, and McGuire said the investigation is ongoing.

Road closed A section of eastbound Hwy. 94 near the Busch Wildlife Area will be closed until Aug. 5 as part of a project to rebuild shoulders on the roadway. “We are continuing work on widening Hwy. 94 between Defiance and Route D in St. Charles County,” said Andrew Gates, with MoDOT. “This work will rebuild the shoulders on eastbound 94 from Little Femme Osage Creek to just south of Francis Howell High School.”  Crews will close eastbound Hwy. 94 from Little Femme Osage Creek to just south of Francis Howell High School. Drivers can use Route DD and Route D to detour around the closure.

Dardenne Prairie History lesson The city of Dardenne Prairie will share its history with residents this fall. A history booth will be featured in the Prairie Days celebration on Sept. 17, and the city is looking for any pictures, items

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NEWSMAGAZINENETWORK.COM or newspaper articles related to the city’s history. Anyone willing to lend historical items to the city or to share stories and answer questions in the booth can contact Mayor Pam Fogarty at mayor@dardenneprairie. org or call 755-5306.

Wentzville F.P.D. Firefighters fight cancer 1st Financial Federal Credit Union has teamed up with the Wentzville Firefighters Community Outreach team to raise money for local community members fighting cancer. “Fight Like a Firefighter” 5K and 1.25K race and fun walk will be held at 8 a.m. on Sept. 10, at Fireman’s Park in downtown Wentzville. “At a time when people need it the most, we want to do whatever we can to help,” said Max Mueller, captain of the Wentzville Firefighters. “The community event and survivor parade gives us a chance to spend the day celebrating with cancer survivors and acknowledging their stories of survival.” A family fun fest will follow the race, along with a Survivor Parade at 10:30 a.m. and a musical performance by Missouri Mile at 11 a.m. Proceeds will benefit local residents battling cancer. For more information, visit

O’Fallon Easy access Residents can now report a problem or make a request with just a click of the mouse. O’Fallon recently rolled out the online interactive Citizens First Center at www. “This is truly a ‘one-stop’ customer service tool,” said Conan Stott, director of Citizens First. “With this system, residents just send in their request through our Web site, and it will be automatically forwarded to the appropriate department for action. Then, residents can follow the progress of their issue just by logging in and following along.” The new system also provides city staff with comprehensive tracking and reporting tools that will help staff respond more efficiently to questions or concerns. Whether a resident emails a question or complaint or calls in, the issue will be logged in the system and automatically distributed to the appropriate department for action. “One of the keys to this system is that it really allows us to better track our responses to issues and concerns,” Stott said. “We’ll have real-time access to updates on projects and detailed explanations for where things stand. In O’Fallon, we pride ourselves on

providing the best possible customer service, and with this system, we’ll have the tools necessary to be even better.”

Cleaners robbed Police are still searching for a suspect who robbed the Apple Cleaners on Bryan Road on July 19. The suspect entered the cleaners at about 7:20 a.m., produced a handgun and demanded the money in the cash register. After taking an undisclosed amount of cash the suspect left on foot in an unknown direction O’Fallon Police Officer Diana Damke said there were no injuries. The suspect is described as 5 foot 7 inches with a medium build and medium complexion, with a thick non-descript, possibly foreign, accent. At the time of the robbery the suspect was wearing a black hat, black shirt and black pants. “It is still an active investigation,” Damke said. Anyone with information is urged to call the Criminal Investigations Division of the O’Fallon Police Department at 240-3200 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-371-TIPS.

Lake Saint Louis Hospital received commendations SSM Cancer Care at St. Joseph Health Center and St. Joseph Hospital West has once again earned a three-year accreditation with six commendations for its cancer programs in five areas: cancer committee leadership, cancer data management, clinical services, community outreach and quality improvement. The award is granted by the Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons and honors programs that are committed to providing the highest level of quality cancer care to their communities. SSM Cancer Care is the only cancer program in St. Charles County to receive this accreditation, which it has held since 1991.

St. Peters No parking Driveways in St. Peters will now be limited to cars and trucks. The city of St. Peters has lifted the moratorium allowing for the parking of recreational vehicles on residential lots. “As a courtesy, we had lifted restrictions on parking these recreational vehicles while flooding affected many RV storage areas and boat docks. With river levels coming down, that moratorium has been lifted,” said Mayor Len Pagano. This moratorium originally began on April 25 and then was extended again after May 25.

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10 I cover story I 



Pseudoephedrine sales in St. Charles County to be prescription only by end of August By Jeannie Seibert With much squirming and discomfort, the St. Charles County Council unanimously passed a bill on July 25 that makes pseudoephedrine products available by prescription only. St. Charles County Sheriff Tom Neer and county Health Department Director Gil Copley teamed up to urge the council to take this step for the county’s “public health and public safety.” Pseudoephedrine is the key ingredient in the manufacture of methamphetamine or meth. Meth labs have been on the rise in St. Charles County, with meth lab busts having more than doubled in the past year alone. Councilman Paul Wynn (Dist. 4) is a self-described conservative bordering on libertarian who consistently opposes government intervention and overreach. “I may live to regret this but I’m supporting this bill,” Wynn said. That clinched it. The remaining council members followed suit with little fanfare. This gives credit to Neer’s and Copley’s lengthy and detailed campaign to convince even the most hands-off legislator that St. Charles County needs to join with the 41 counties among Missouri’s 114 that have passed similar legislation. Neer said the Missouri House of Representatives had passed a measure in the last session that would have prohibited statewide over-the-counter (OTC) sales of pseudoephedrine products. But “it didn’t even get a hearing in the Senate,” Neer said, much to his disappointment. “This was passed in Oregon five

years ago and they’ve seen a 71 percent drop in meth labs.” Mo. Rep. Kurt Bahr (Dist. 14) told the County Council he was not one of those who voted for this House bill, preferring a technology-based prevention program called E-Tracking. He described E-Tracking as a database that records who is buying pseudoephedrine products. “Where it’s been tried, it’s working,” Bahr said. Wynn said he and Bahr generally agree “99.999 percent of the time but not this time. “There’s no joy in Mudville tonight,” Wynn said. “I just never heard an argument as compelling as the facts that supported passing this bill. I don’t like taking away people’s freedoms but this is a case of public safety, children are involved. This isn’t comparable to the smoking ban.” Because some states and counties are doing just what the St. Charles County Council has others are taking the E-Tracking route. This gives state lawmakers the opportunity to see which is the more effective method to stamp out meth manufacture and the spread of the highly-addictive drug. “This is the most addictive illegal drug out there,” Neer said. In fact, it’s dangerously addictive, according to Copley who has consulted numerous healthcare professionals. Even one use can hook an individual on a drug so toxic that devastates a human body and impairs brain function in a matter of weeks. Virtually no one ever returns to normal once hooked on

A map showing the locations of verified methamphetamine labs in St. Charles County.

meth. But Copley’s reasons for banning OTC pseudoephedrine sales have more to do with the children being brought up in homes where meth is being produced. “I’m basically concerned about children and those who live in the homes that may be laboratories,” Copley said. “The chemicals used are extremely hazardous, that release vapors that are airborne and children can inhale or absorb through the skin and eyes. “It is established that these chemicals, some are neurotoxins, can be spilled in the manufacturing process so a child can come in contact with them accidently,” Copley said. “Even low-level exposure can cause headaches, nausea, shortness of breath, chest pains, and dizziness; and, there are other concerns like renal problems and other issues.

“Chronic exposure can cause damage to the brain and central nervous system,” he said. The younger the child, the more pervasive and likely there is permanent damage to those bodily systems that affect childhood development. Sheriff Neer’s drug task force identified 37 homes so far this year in which children were present during meth-making activities. All the children were taken into state custody. “Multiply that by two and we’re talking about 70 to 80 kids so far this year,” Copley said. “Sheriff Neer is as passionate about this as I am.” Neer rattled off statistics from a law enforcement standpoint. The meth lab phe-


Dardenne Prairie to spend thousands to replace new sidewalks By Amy Armour than the quality of the concrete,” Kehoe sidewalk north of the City Hall building New concrete sidewalks were installed said. for $8,756. around Dardenne Prairie City Hall just Kehoe told aldermen on July 20 that the The city has hired Kadean Construcabout 18 months ago, but much of the side- cost to replace all of the sidewalks that tion Company — who is building the park walk is already marked with small holes, wrap around City Hall would be about behind City Hall — to complete the job. pock marks and cracks. $73,000. Kadean Construction will also remove The company that originally installed The Board of Aldermen , the mayor four slabs of damaged concrete around the sidewalks in 2009 has gone out of busi- and city staff took a tour around City Hall the city’s transformer. The area will be ness and has been forgotten - so much so, during the workshop meeting to assess the replaced with soil and low lying vegetation no one recalls the company’s name. damages before deciding to only replace instead of additional concrete for a cost of just under $1,000. Luke Kehoe, city engineer, said the side- two of the most damaged sections. City Administrator Brad Turvey said the walk damage could have been related to The Dardenne Prairie Board of Alderworkers using the wrong strength of con- men approved the replacement of a sidewalk repairs will be paid through the 1,250-square-foot section of sidewalk that general funds. crete or mixing the concrete too much. Repairs and replacement of the new “The poor sidewalk condition is more runs behind City Hall for a cost of $9,594, likely the quality of workmanship, rather as well as a 1,180-square-foot section of sidewalks are scheduled to begin soon.



 I 11

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Dardenne Prairie officials to receive donated iPads By Amy Armour Apple iPads are a definite part of the future for city officials in Dardenne Prairie. But something unexpected has occurred. Instead of paying for the devices out of the city’s general fund, as reported in MRN, July 20, the iPads will be donated to the city. Alderman Kevin Harris said the St. Charles-based law firm Hazelwood & Weber — which also serves as the city’s attorney — has agreed to sponsor the nine refurbished iPads at a cost of $349 each. All six aldermen, the city administrator, the mayor and city clerk will receive an iPad to be used to conduct city business.

Currently the city prints out 12 copies of all of the agendas, bills and information for staff and aldermen. The only person with a laptop is the city engineer — which is a contracted position — and he brings his own. “City officials all agree that the meeting agendas and packets take a huge amount of time and resources to produce, we just have not been sure what the most efficient and economical solution would be,” said Mayor Pam Fogarty. “When I heard that Hazelwood and Weber were going to underwrite the purchase of iPads for the city, I was elated.” The workshop and Board of Aldermen

meeting agendas and all accompanying documents can be downloaded on the iPads and distributed to the mayor, aldermen and staff at the meetings. Aldermen can write their notes on the iPad and e-mail it to their computer and save the documents with notes. The iPads will be returned to the City Clerk after the meetings and she will have them charged and documents downloaded for the next meeting. Unfortunately, the city will have to wait awhile for the new technology, as Apple is currently out of stock of the refurbished iPads. “I’m checking everyday with Apple,” Harris said.

Additions at FZN to be completed after school starts By Amy Armour Weather related issues and a mason’s strike this summer have slowed construction on a classroom addition at Fort Zumwalt North High School. Bill Weber, assistant superintendent for the district, said the 14-classroom addition at Fort Zumwalt North will not be ready prior to the start of school on Aug. 17, as previously planned. Weber said construction was slowed by a mason’s strike, which just broke in mid-July. “They are now back to work, but the building addition

will not be ready prior to the start of school,” said Weber, who did not have an expected date of completion. But other areas of the $3.6 million project — including a 4,400-square-foot band room, and several classroom renovations — will be ready for students this month. The school also has seven temporary classrooms in the basement that can be used prior to the completion of the addition. The 14-classroom addition at Fort Zumwalt West High School — which was not affected by the mason’s strike — is on schedule to be complete prior to students returning on Aug. 17.

14 I NEWS I 



Former O’Fallon city administrator hired to manage Phoenix suburb By Mary Ann O’Toole Holley Patrick Banger, a former city administrator for the city of O’Fallon, has been hired as town manager for a Phoenix, Ariz., suburb. Banger will receive a base salary of $170,000 a year to manage the town of Gilbert, a community of more than 200,000 residents in Maricopa County, in the Phoenix metropolitan area. In 2010, Gilbert was recognized by as the 36th Best Place to live in the nation and among the top places to live and learn. Washington-based C.Q. Press rated Gilbert as the safest municipality in Arizona. Banger served O’Fallon under the Paul Renaud Administration from 1998 to 2004, during a period flagged with flagrant misspending determined by a 2003 audit by former Missouri State Auditor Claire McCaskill, now a U.S. Senator. The audit, released in 2005, after Banger’s resignation, indicated that salary incentives totaling $230,500 and $129,750 were paid to various city of O’Fallon executive team members and other staff during 2002 and 2003. In 2003, incentives ranged from $2,500 to $35,000. The incentive program was not a part of the city’s personnel policy and there was no documentation that the

Board of Aldermen approved the amounts, the tasks involved, or the time required. Many of the incentives appeared to be for tasks that may have been completed by respective positions regardless of the additional compensation, McCaskill said. In 2003, the city contracted with an outside firm at a cost of $32,000 to perform a salary survey of positions in similar communities. In 2004, the city dropped the incentive plan; however, instead of basing the new salaries on the survey results, salaries were increased in the amount of the 2003 incentives to form new base salaries. Some of these salaries significantly exceeded the survey data. Banger received incentives of $35,000 in 2003 and $25,000 in 2004. Banger was also associated with several concerns by McCaskill regarding a trip to Ireland, including no reconciliation of the total trip costs, no documented benefit to the city and questionable items purchased by the city. In January 2004, along with the former mayor, Banger and seven board members and their spouses traveled to Ireland with six business representatives and guests to try to establish a “sister city program.” The trip was funded by donations from local businesses. In September 2004, a reconcil-

iation of trip expenditures totaling $40,984 and donations received totaling $44,000 was completed. There was no accounting for the remaining $3,016, and $300 in costs did not have supporting receipts or invoices. There was no documentation of any formal reporting on the results of the trip in a board meeting and the city did not enter into a “sister city program.” Several items were purchased by the city for each member of the group, including passport holders, luggage tags, and embroidered attaché cases, which did not appear to be prudent and reasonable expenditures, McCaskill said. Banger was also associated with a dispute over payment of a WingHaven monument at the Phoenix Parkway roundabout in 2007. WingHaven Residential asked for the $35,000 reimbursement as part of a $230,000 “agreement” that was struck in closed session in 2001. Then Mayor Donna Morrow said the $35,000 was part of the larger $230,000 agreement to reimbursement WingHaven for roundabouts and sidewalks along Bryan Road from Feise to Hwy. N. About $200,000 of the “agreement” had already been paid in 2004 under the Renaud Administration, done as a mid-year budget adjustment.

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“It’s a sidewalk that goes from nowhere to nowhere, and it’s not even inside O’Fallon city limits,” Morrow said as she vetoed the $35,000 reimbursement. Although there were no minutes of any aldermanic meeting held on the issue, a memorandum dated May 2002, on letterhead from McBride and Sons reiterated a conversation held with Banger saying that the city would reimburse WingHaven for a sidewalk, landscaping and art. Vicki Boschert, director of finance, said the city was not required to keep minutes of closed session meetings in 2001. McCaskill also cited Banger for attending a five-day seminar at the Wharton School in Pennsylvania at a cost of $4,950 and $610 for airfare, an additional hotel and meals. There was no documentation indicating the board approved this training. McCaskill said in the audit that “it is unclear if costly trips such as this are necessary or beneficial to the city.” After Banger left the city of O’Fallon, he worked as an executive with McCarthy Building Co. and  Schaeffer Homes and was a board member and paid consultant for ShowMe Aquatics and Fitness, a St. Charles-based nonprofit that aids disabled people. Banger’s most recently worked as a private economic development consultant.

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CALL TO ARTISTS The Dardenne Prairie, MO Parks & Recreation Commission is seeking artisans and vintage sellers to participate in their 6th annual “PRAIRIE DAY” country fair. The juried event is scheduled for Saturday, September 17th 10am-10pm. All items must be handmade or vintage. Deadline is August 27th.

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By Mary Ann O’Toole Holley O’Fallon Police Chief Roy Joachimstaller says a lack of police officers in the city is hampering the department’s ability to bring prosecutions in a number of drug, burglaries and larceny cases. At a recent meeting of the City Council, Joachimstaller said since last year, the department has been operating two officers under full-strength, with 107 officers instead of the traditional 109. “During last year’s budget effort, we held open two officers positions to help fund the step (wage) increases our officers hadn’t received in a number of years,” Joachimstaller said. “We did that with the belief that those positions would be restored whenever the budget allowed.” Joachimstaller said, to date the police positions haven’t been restored. “In order to keep the same amount of uniformed officers in our neighborhoods, I made a conscious decision at that time to reduce by one, a detective in our detective bureau and one detective in our Regional Drug Task Force,” Joachimstaller said. “As everyone knows, one action will always cause a reaction, and the dynamics of the brilliant decision by the chief resulted in some disturbing trends that we’ve developed that involve the clearance rate and ability to further investigate our drug cases in the city,” A couple of cases jumped off the pages that are beginning a trend, Joachimstaller said. Statistics show a dramatic decrease in the number of crime categories not being prosecuted, he said. Through May, O’Fallon has seen a 13-percent decrease in larcenies investigated and prosecuted and an alarming

21-percent decrease in the number of burglaries the Police Department has been able to successfully clear. During that same time period, Joachimstaller said, “There has been a reported increase in the number of meth labs discovered in this region and in O’Fallon, along with the well-publicized heroine epidemic that I’m sure everyone is up to speed on through media reports.” Joachimstaller said through meetings with finance staff, it appears revenue projections for the city will support restoration of these positions this budget year. “My plea is to ask for your help in restoring these positions in order to provide the services that our community and all of us expect and really deserve,” Joachimstaller said. “Positive consideration is appreciated, not only by the community, but by the officers that work for the O’Fallon Police Department.” Joachimstaller said if approved, the two new officers would be put on patrol and free two other officers for detective work. “I still have one detective there on the Drug Task Force,” Joachimstaller said. “For a year they’ve been working at a disadvantage because we can’t fulfill our agreement to provide two detectives.” Joachimstaller said positions would be posted and officers could apply for them if they had the necessary qualifications. “One of the concentrations of the Drug Task Force is the heroine epidemic,” Joachimstaller said. “We don’t require our officers to do drug investigations because it is handled by the Task Force, and without them, those investigations go by the wayside. I don’t want to take officers from uniformed patrol, because I believe that is the backbone of any department.”

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By Amy Armour found two capsules floating in the toilet A St. Charles County woman was taken which prompted the person to call police. into custody on July 26 after allegedly Police arrived at the McDonald’s shortly snorting heroin in a McDonald’s restroom after to question Horton, who lives in the in Weldon Spring while her two children 7800 block of Mexico Road. played in the restaurant’s play area. “When (deputies) were talking to her she Lt. Craig McGuire, with the St. Charles seemed to be very sleepy and had trouble County Sheriff’s Department, said they maintaining her balance,” McGuire said. received a call at 12:39 p.m. in reference to McGuire said the 36-year-old mother the welfare of a female and two children. told police that she took her two young The caller — who wished to remain children into St. Louis city to purchase anonymous — told police that Kelli L. heroin. She then drove back to St. Charles Horton left her 2- and 4-year-old children County and stopped at the McDonald’s in the play area for more than 10 minutes, located at 5950 Hwy. 94. After feeding her and when she returned from the restroom children, she left them in the playground she was stumbling and a little incoherent. area and went into the bathroom where she The caller then went into the restroom and allegedly snorted heroin, McGuire said.

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Central County Fire & Rescue firefighter Gary Donovan, left and St. Peters Alderman Tommy Roberts joined forces to help out a St. Peters resident in need.

Give a little, get a lot: Firefighters volunteer to help St. Peters resident By Jeannie Seibert There’s more than one way to skin a cat – or repair damage done to private property when the fire department has to meet its annual fire hydrants flush and test requirements. While the damage wasn’t major, it was more than St. Peters Ward 3 homeowner Bob McPhail could deal with after Central County Fire & Rescue (CCFR) recently performed it annual maintenance on a fire hydrant that sits at the end of McPhail’s driveway. McPhail is suffering from the aftereffects of the West Nile virus he contracted some 10 years ago and is now confined to a wheelchair. “When we test these hydrants, some water is let out and it is under quite a bit of pressure,” said CCFR A-shift firefighter Gary Donovan. The water washed out the area including the 2-inch lime rock lining McPhail’s driveway. He’s simply incapable of repairing the damage on his own. Thinking the city of St. Peters could provide some assistance, McPhail contacted Alderman Tommy Roberts. “I checked with City Hall, but since the county owns the hydrant and it’s on private property, there just wasn’t anything the city could do,” Roberts said. But, after having worked with the CCFR Community Outreach Committee on a 2010 fundraising project that raised $15,000 for Meals on Wheels, Roberts had made a number of friends. “I called my buddies over at Central County (CCFR) to see if there wasn’t something we could do to help Bob (McPhail) out,” Roberts said. It worked. With funds from the CCFR Community Outreach account to pay for the materi-

als needed to construct a concrete pad to protect McPhail’s property from future fire hydrant tests and a willing team of firefighters-turned-concrete contractor volunteers, Roberts joined in to solve McPhail’s problem. The crew consisted of firefighters Jake Taylor and James Hill along with Roberts and Donovan who got together on a 98-degree July 21 to get the digging and grading completed so forms and rock could be spread in preparation for the concrete delivery on July 22. “See?” Roberts joked. “Government works sometimes – you just have to get a little creative.” Donovan stressed the cooperative relationship that has sprung up between CCFR and St. Peters. “Ever since we worked together on the Meals for Wheels trivia night last year, we’ve kind of expanded on that and now they’re helping us out with our Community Outreach fund,” Donovan said. Roberts said, “There’s something about these guys (CCFR) that they are already paid public servants but they are always ready and willing to do whatever it takes to help out their community.” After McPhail’s driveway issues were fixed, he declined to be interviewed or photographed, but, handed Donovan a thank you card and, for the record said, “I just want to say thanks to everyone.” Donovan, obviously touched by the card, said, “Well, that kind of explains it.” Roberts said the Community Outreach fund has been a little bit stressed during a down economy. To raise funds, CCFR is hosting the Lakeside Que-topia barbeque competition, a state-sanctioned KC Barbeque Society (KCBS) event. The event is set for Sept. 16 and Sept. 17 at 370 Lakeside Park.

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Bu llet i n Boa rd Francis Howell Scientific students Some students experimented with summer school in July. Three high school students from the Francis Howell School District spent six weeks this summer at the 2011 Students and Teachers As Research Scientists (STARS) program, hosted by the University of Missouri–St. Louis (UMSL). Will Hardy, Francis Howell High School; Neel Kothari, Francis Howell Central High School; and Smitha Milli, Francis Howell North High School had the chance to research everything from neural circuits in the brain to human/robot interaction to evolutionary computation. The students — who are now named 2011 STARS Young Scholars—had the opportunity to participate in research projects in anthropology, astronomy, biology, chemistry, computer science, earth science, engineering, mathematics, physics or psychology at Washington University. During the program, students researched within a community of investigators under the supervision of a practicing research mentors at Washington University. Through this student-mentor partnership, Hardy, Kothari and Milli along with their mentors applied various problem-solving strategies to independent research projects, wrote a 15- to 20-page technical report and orally presented their results in a seminar format. In addition to conducting research and presenting papers, students took part in career workshops, attended lectures by leading scientists from the St. Louis community, and enjoyed social activities. STARS is a program funded partially through Pfizer, Inc.; LMI Aerospace/D3 Technologies; Office of the Chancellor of UM-St. Louis; Saint Louis University; Washington University; Green Foundation; and Solae Company. It introduces

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both rising high school juniors and seniors and teachers to the various aspects of the scientific enterprise as practiced by successful scientists in academic, private and governmental research institutions.

Wentzville Students shine

Forty-two seniors in the Wentzville School District have qualified for Missouri “Bright Flight” scholarships this year. Fun and friendship Bright Flight is the Missouri Department Students at Francis Howell Middle of Higher Education (MDHE) academic School participated in the QUEST Middle scholarship program that awards scholSchool Summer program last month. arships to the top 5 percent of the state’s QUEST offers hands-on, enrichment high school seniors as determined by their activities for students entering sixth, ACT or SAT composite scores. This year, seventh and eighth grades. The QUEST a score of 30 or above on the ACT or an environment and activities are designed to SAT score of 770 or above on critical readprovide enrichment experiences that stimu- ing and math qualifies a student for Bright late a student’s physical, social, intellectual Flight. and emotional development. Timberland High School and Holt High Students participate in sports tourna- School each had 21 students qualify for ments, science experiments, cooking the scholarship. The number of WSD stuNewsmagazine classes, creative arts, drama, computer lab, dents recognized as Bright Flight Scholars Salesperson: recreation games, service learning and garhas more than doubled in just the past two Proof: Client: dening, to name a few. And weekly field years. “We are very proud of our students, and trips and special presentations give students the opportunity for self-expression and the the fact that so many more are awarded Bright Flight every year is a positive development of a positive self-image. trend,” said Terry Adams, WSD superintendent. “We have helped our students by New science lab increasing academic rigor and adding more School officials unveiled the newest Advanced Placement classes, and it’s clear addition to Francis Howell North High our students are benefiting with higher test School with a ribbon cutting ceremony scores.” earlier this month. The scholarships can only be used at The new addition includes four new approved Missouri institutions, and are science lab/lecture classrooms, two new intended to encourage top-ranked high storage/prep rooms, one new classroom to school seniors to attend college in Misreplace one displaced by construction, and souri. an additional set of student restrooms. Established in 1986, Francis Howell North was originally built as a middle Free lunch program school and as a result, the school did not The Wentzville School District has have adequate science lab space. Larger announced its revised free and reduced labs were needed, particularly for chem- price policy for school children unable to istry classes, where student safety was a pay the full price of meals served under the concern based on inadequate space. National School Lunch Program and the


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School Breakfast Program. Federal education officials have adopted the family-size income criteria for deter­ mining eligibility. For example, a family of four making less than $29,055 annually qualifies for a free lunch. A family of four making $41,348 qualifies for a reduced lunch. Children from families whose current income is at or below these levels are eligible for free or reduced priced meals. Applications are available at the principal’s office in each school, and can be submitted at any time during the year. The information provided on the application is confidential and will be used only for the purpose of determining eligibility.

SCC Theatre line up announced St. Charles Community College’s Center Stage Theatre has announced its fiveDate of issue: show lineup for the 2011-12 season. The Client: season includes shows from all genres, from romance and comedySize: to musicals and dramas. Colors: The season will open on Oct. 5 with WilPictures: liam Inge’s “Bus Stop,” directed by SCC adjunct theater professor Logos: Deborah Phillips. In November, theatre-goers can check Copy: out the Tony Award winning play “The 39 Steps,” which combines a Hitchcock masterpiece with a juicy spy novel and adds a dash of Monty Python. “Harvey,” an American classic about mild mannered Elwood P. Dowd and his mysterious friend, a six-foot tall invisible rabbit named Harvey, will open in February, and the springtime show, “Becky’s New Car,” is a comedy by Steven Dietz. The final show of the season will be “A Little Night Music,” written by Hugh Wheeler with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Tickets for the general public are $8; $6 for senior citizens and students; and free for SCC students with a valid I.D. For more information about Center Stage Theatre, contact Vicky Teson at 922-8255.


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Lindenwood University’s economic impact Lindenwood University President James D. Evans, Ph.D., delivered a presentation on the university’s economic and community impact to more than 100 members of the St. Charles Chamber of Commerce on July 20.          Evans’ presentation outlined the positive financial and civic contributions Lindenwood makes in the region. Key types of value discussed included the university’s generation of stable employment for more than 500 full-time and 900 part-time employees, its provision of higher education for more than 17,000 current students and its population of the workforce with more than 3,000 graduates annually. Lindenwood’s fiscal impact, taking higher education’s effect on workforce job skills into account, is estimated to surpass $600 million. In addition, the school’s $155 million new construction campaign that has been carried out during the past decade has also greatly impacted the local economy. “Between 2001 and 2010, new construction at the university required the professional services of more than 700 construction employees, including subcontractors,” Evans said. “That does not include the funds invested or employees needed to maintain, update, or renovate existing buildings on the campus.”

The university’s role in bringing diversity, arts, and entertainment to the community through a variety of free outlets was also detailed by the president, as were the contributions of Lindenwood student volunteers who annually spend thousands of hours advancing the greater good of the region.

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Anthropology offered this fall Lindenwood University is launching a new undergraduate degree program in anthropology beginning this fall through its School of Sciences. Students will earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in anthropology with an emphasis in either cultural anthropology or archaeology. The archaeology emphasis will prepare students for either a job in archaeology or for entrance into a Master’s or Doctoral program in anthropology. Archaeology provides the largest number of jobs in the field of anthropology, and LU’s new course selection in archaeology will focus on practical aspects of the field. The cultural anthropology emphasis will prepare students for any career involving an international or multicultural setting such as social services, journalism, law, economic or social development, humanitarian services or graduate programs in anthropology. For more information on the new major in anthropology, contact the LU admissions office at 949-4949.

FZ votes to continue ID badges for high school students By Amy Armour The battle to get Fort Zumwalt high school students to wear a photo identification badge to school will continue this fall. The Fort Zumwalt Board of Education voted 5-1 in favor of continuing the policy that requires students to wear the photo identification badges in plain view at all times while at school. Board Member Laure Schmidt voted against the policy. Schmidt has questioned the need for IDs since many students have been found not wearing them. Superintendent Bernie DuBray acknowledged that enforcing the policy has been difficult. Principals have tried a variety of tactics to get students to wear the badges on a consistent basis — but it hasn’t always worked, he said. And teachers are required to fill out paperwork and verify that students are wearing an ID on a regular basis. “It’s a lot of work, and it can be labor intensive…but I think it’s worth it,” said DuBray. Student identification badges were

I schools I 21

implemented — along with the addition of security cameras, school resource officers and hall monitors — after a student hostage situation at Fort Zumwalt South High School in 1998. DuBray said the student ID badges help identify that the student belongs in the school. “It shows that they have a reason to be there,” DuBray said. Teachers are also required to wear a photo ID badge, he said. DuBray said requiring students to wear a photo badge everyday also prepares them for the workforce. “It helps students learn discipline,” DuBray said. “Most likely they will have to wear some type of identification badge for work.” The board also decided to change the punishment for failing to wear the ID. In previous years, on the fifth offense a student found without the badge on would receive a one day out-of-school suspension. The updated policy changes the punishment to four hours of Saturday detention.

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NEWSMAGAZINENETWORK.COM 22 I schools I  Howell High’s new Academic Building stands ready for 2011-12 school year AUGUST 3, 2011 MID RIVERS NEWSMAGAZINE

teachers to travel throughout the day. FHHS Principal Chris Greiner said having all classes housed in a single building will improve security. The new building also adds about 50,000 square feet of much needed space which will eliminate the need for teachers to share classrooms. “Sometimes teachers would have to travel to three or four classrooms a day,” Greiner said. The extra space also allowed for the school to include a large commons area that doubles as a cafeteria. The area can seat 600 and includes a small stage that can be used for class meetings. An outdoor covered patio connects to the commons, so -Chris Greiner students can eat outside as well. “It provides a space where kids can Construction started on the new aca- gather,” Greiner said. “We didn’t have the demic building — located at 7001 Hwy. 94 space for a commons area in the former South — in June 2009. As the oldest high building.” school in the district, school officials said The new building also includes a larger buildings needed major renovation because library and media room, extra storage space of aging sewer, plumbing, and other sys- for materials, equipment and upgraded scitems. Four of the old buildings are cur- ence classrooms. rently under demolition to make room for “The building was designed to accomexpanded parking and a large multipurpose modate up to 2,200 students, so we still gymnasium — to be completed by 2013. have room to grow,” Greiner said. The campus originally included five The second phase of construction will buildings which required students and include a new multi-function gymnasium

By Amy Armour The new Francis Howell High School Academic Building will open its doors to about 1,800 students on Aug. 8. The three-story, 250,000-square-foot academic building includes 106 classrooms, a library media center, cafeteria and commons area, and administrative offices.

“The building was designed to accommodate up to 2,200 students, so we still have room to grow.”

A new library awaits students at FHHS.

and sports fields, which are projected to be completed in 2013. “As education continues to evolve, kids and teachers need collaborative working spaces — to build their work together. Teachers are engaging their students more than ever in their learning are beginning to move from the ‘sage on the stage’ to the ‘guide on the side,’” said Superintendent

Pam Sloan. “These new facilities are going to allow our students and teachers to have teaching and learning spaces that will maximize their time together in that effort.” The new academic building was a part of the $78.5 million Proposition B – Building for Our Children’s Future no-tax-rateincrease bond issue, approved by voters in the fall of 2008.

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24 I sports I 



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Spor t s Jasper defends Metropolitan Open championship

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of relief – not because the tournament was over but it was the first really positive result I had seen in golf in a few months,” Jasper said. “I think this win will be as big as last year’s win. “Last year was the first, and that’s always tough to get at any level. But this year hopefully will lead to a good stretch of confident, high-level golf.” Jasper is hoping this will send him on to more success on the Nationwide Tour. The competition is keen. “I think this will lead to a nice stretch of golf on the Nationwide Tour,” Jasper said. “I knew my game was coming back the last couple weeks, but this win has just solidified it in my mind. “I have much more confidence than I have had in a long time and I feel that has been a big part of what has been missing this year. I am still going to go out and have some fun and shoot the best I can, but I know have an expectation for good things to happen, not the alternative.” This time, Jasper did not start the final round of the Metropolitan Open Championship five shots back, as he did in 2010. He trailed by two strokes this time. “Being behind heading into the final

Shawn Jasper

the wind. “Luckily the putter finally heated up and started making putts. I capped it with a 25-footer on 14 and then a 70-footer on 15 to ultimately take the lead.” Amateur Skip Berkmeyer would fire a 2-under par 68 on the day and finish in a tie for third to earn the low amateur award for the second consecutive year. The 2006 Open Champion has finished in the top 5 in four of the six Open Championships. For his part, Jasper will be back. “I want to thank the MAGA and St Albans again for another great event,” he said.

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By WARREN MAYES Shawn Jasper has learned how tough golf is when you turn professional. He qualified this year for the Nationwide Tour. The Francis Howell and University of Missouri graduate missed the cut in his first 11 tournaments. Jasper began his professional career the summer after his senior year at the University of Missouri and competed right away on the Canadian Tour. Since then, he has made his way around other small tours, including the Hooters Tour and Adams Golf Pro Tour as well as one in North Carolina. This year, he graduated PGA Qualifying School in Florida by finishing in the top 125 to earn a card for the Nationwide Tour. With a break in the schedule, he returned to play in the Metropolitan Amateur Golf Association’s tournament for professionals and amateurs. So, the Marthasville native came back to St. Louis and got some home cooking. The 26-year-old Jasper successfully defended his Metropolitan Open championship by shooting a 3-under 207 over three days at the Country Club at St. Albans. “When I knew I had won I was obviously happy, but more than that it was a sense

round wasn’t that big of a deal to me,” Jasper said. “I felt if I could go out and post a number, maybe the leaders would notice and start thinking about it a bit. I knew two shots on St. Albans wasn’t very hard to make up, so I felt very confident that I had a chance.” Last year he had a five-stroke margin between him and the championship after his sixth hole in the final round. This time around, he only had 12 holes remaining to make that charge and repeat, and that he did. “I honestly never knew I was down five,” Jasper said. “My goal was to go out and put together a good front nine and then I would take a look and see where I was. Since I turned in 2 over, I never looked at a board until after I birdied 12. That’s when I saw I was still only two back.” His game came alive at the turn. Jasper would play holes 10 through 18 at 5-under, get to 3-under and watch the final two groups come in and cap off the victory. “When I made the turn I just decided I was going to play to win and stay aggressive,” Jasper said. “After I birdied 10 and 12 to get to even for the day and saw the leaders were the same, I knew I could finish strong and post something, especially with the last few holes playing tough, back into

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Keeping motivated: Stay on top of the challenge You’ve started on your journey to a new lifestyle. You’re eating healthier and moving more. You may have lost 10 pounds, or even 15. But now you may have hit a plateau. You’re getting discouraged and you’re not sure if you can keep this up. If losing weight was always easy, we wouldn’t have the obesity dilemma that America and much of the world is facing right now. Now, more than ever, the challenge is to keep going and push yourself as you inch closer to your goal. Set Goals: Make them realistic and celebrate when you reach them. When you started, you may have set a 5 pound weight-loss goal, then 10 pounds. Numbers are great, but try putting on your favorite pair of pants that used to fit. Do this every morning until you’re comfortable wearing them. Then try them on every morning until they are too big. Finally, try them on until you can’t hold them up anymore. You are ready to set a new goal, and get those jeans out of the house.

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protein counting. Taking a break does not mean indulging in everything and negating the previous week’s work. Give yourself a day to be a little more flexible though. Enjoy good conversation over a delicious meal with your family. Remember, depriving yourself of those good times and foods will only result in bad cravings which may lead to overindulgence. Change it up and Push Yourself: Once The most important thing is to remember you get into a routine with eating or exer- to live. Try not to be so strict with yourself cising, your body gets used to it. Try new that you’re not enjoying life. If you’re perrecipes with different types of fruits and sistent and you don’t give up, you’re bound vegetables purchased fresh from the pro- to reach your goals. Keep moving, eat as duce stand. Try exercising in the morn- healthy as you can without depriving youring, you’ll be guaranteed that you get your self and you will succeed. Losing weight workout in and you won’t have to think is 80 percent nutrition and 20 percent exerabout it the rest of the day. On weekends cise. If you’re feeding your body healthy when you are likely have more time to food, you will be living the life of a healthdevote to working out, take an extra long ier person. For those who participated in walk or use the elliptical at the gym, and the Biggest Winner of St. Charles County, then do aerobic exercises in the pool. Push they have hopefully learned healthy lifeyourself to do more. style changes that can lower their blood pressure or cholesterol, lessen their risk Take a Break: Everyone deserves a day of chronic health problems and enhanced of rest from calorie, carbohydrate, fat and their quality of life.

Teacher’s Appreciation Night Shown with the River City Rascals’ mascot is Brenda Olivares, a teacher at Fairmount Elementary School, in the Francis Howell School District. Olivares was chosen to throw out the first pitch at the River City Rascals’ Teachers’ Appreciation Night, held Wednesday, July 27. The Teachers’ Appreciation Night was sponsored by Mid Rivers Newsmagazine. Mid Rivers Newsmagazine and the Rascals donated hundreds of tickets to teachers in St. Charles County as a way of saying “thank you” for all their efforts.

I news I 25

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26 I back to school I 



Infant Care Preschool Childcare After-School Los Niños

Back-to-school sales tax holiday starts Aug. 5



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By state law, the School Tax Holiday begins on the first Friday in August and continues through the following Sunday. In 2011, the three-day holiday begins at midnight on Friday, Aug. 5, and runs through Sunday, Aug. 7. Certain back-to-school purchases, such as clothing, school supplies, computers, and other items as defined by the statute, are exempt from sales tax for this time period only. The sales tax exemption is limited to: Clothing – any article having a taxable value of $100 or less School supplies – not to exceed $50 per purchase Computer software  – taxable value of $350 or less Personal computers  – not to exceed $3,500 Computer peripheral devices – not to exceed $3,500 The sales tax holiday applies to state and local sales taxes when a local jurisdiction chooses to participate in the holiday. However, local jurisdictions can choose to not participate in the holiday if they enacted an ordinance to not participate and notified the state 45 days prior to the sales tax holiday. If the jurisdiction had previously enacted an ordinance to not participate in the holiday and later decided to participate, it must then enact a new ordinance to par-

ticipate and notify the state 45 days prior to the sales tax holiday. If a local taxing jurisdiction is not participating in the sales tax holiday, the state’s portion of the tax rate (4.225 percent) will remain exempt for the sale of qualifying sales tax holiday items. In St. Charles County, the only municipality to opt out of the tax holiday is St. Peters. Meanwhile, many other taxing districts in the county have also chosen to opt out. District taxes will be charged within the following districts: Salt Lick Road Transportation Development District: Suemandy Drive One Community Improvement District; Suemandy Drive Two Community Improvement District; Suemandy/Mid Rivers Community Improvement District; Meadows Transportation Development District; and the Wentzville Parkway I Transportation Development District.

Back to school start dates Francis Howell School District- Aug. 8 St. Charles School District- Aug. 10 Wentzville School District- Aug. 15 Fort Zumwalt School District- Aug. 17 St. Charles Community College- Aug. 20 Lindenwood University- Aug. 22 Treat yourself to a confident new smile with Dr. Larson, Dr. Smith and Invisalign. If you’ve been putting off straightening your teeth now’s your chance to have the glowing beautiful smile you deserve without anyone knowing. Just call our office today and we’ll evaluate your smile at a no-charge Invisalign consultation.

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Rams reach out to help Red Cross restock dwindling blood supplies American Red Cross blood supplies remain seriously low even after thousands of area supporters responded to the national appeal for blood donations. Blood products are going out to area hospitals just as quickly as donations are coming in, according to Laurie V. Nehring, communications manager for the Missouri/Illinois blood services regional chapter of the American Red Cross. In addition, the massive heat wave encompassing much of the country is hurting blood collections at a time when the Red Cross has been working to rebuild its inventories to adequate levels, Nehring said. The sizzling temperatures have made it extremely difficult to recruit sufficient numbers of donors to give blood. Nationally, heat-related issues have forced the Red Cross to cancel blood drives or close them early, resulting in the cancellation of hundreds of scheduled blood donations. In an effort to boost blood supplies the St. Louis Rams are partnering with the Red Cross to encourage healthy individuals to “Be Extraordinary” and turn a typical summer day into an extraordinary gift for a patient in need. From now through Sept. 5 all those who attempt to donate blood at a Red Cross blood drive or blood donation center will receive an opportunity to purchase discounted Rams tickets at a $10-$15 savings via the Rams’ Web site at redcross and be entered in a weekly drawing for a $250 gas card.  “The Red Cross is grateful to everyone who has come forward to give blood in response to this appeal, but we still need

donors to make appointments in the coming days and weeks to help us ensure that all patient blood needs can be met,” said Scott L. Caswell, CEO of the Red Cross Missouri-Illinois Blood Services Region. “We carefully monitor blood supplies, sometimes on an hourly basis, in the hope that there will never be a point where surgeries need to be cancelled,” said Dr. John W. Theus, Red Cross medical director. “However, there is always the chance that a physician could opt to postpone elective surgery when the blood supply dips too low, or in a worst case scenario, have to forego a procedure such as a lifesaving organ transplant because of a shortage of blood.” Each and every blood donation is critical to patient care. The Red Cross is reaching out to eligible blood donors, sponsors and community leaders to ask them to recruit blood donors to help meet the needs of patients in communities across the U.S Phone 800-RED CROSS or go to to schedule an appointment to donate blood or platelets. Platelets may be donated at a Red Cross blood donation center. Platelets aid in the clotting process to prevent or stop bleeding and are vital in helping patients with leukemia or other cancers. American Red Cross Blood Donation Centers in the Newsmagazine Network coverage area include: St. Charles County 252 Mid Rivers Ctr. St. Peters, Mo. 62276 Tues., Fri., Sat. 7:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Wed., Thurs. 11:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. See the Web site at for more locations.

HBA donation Home Builders Charitable Foundation Board Member Harold Burkemper of First Construction of St. Charles (left) and 2011 HBA First Vice President John Eilermann of McBride & Son Companies (right) presented a $5,000 donation to Rip Grasser, vice president of HBA associate member Grasser Electric and board member for The Loyal Order of Squirrels, on behalf of the Home Builders Charitable Foundation. The funds will help The Loyal Order of Squirrels make home repairs to senior citizens’ homes in St. Charles County. The mission of the Squirrels is to provide support for the elderly, handicapped and children of St. Charles County, while meeting the charitable, civic, patriotic and social goals of its membership..

I news I 27

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28 I business I 



Bu si ness Celebrating one year Choice Cabinet in St. Peters recently celebrated its one-year anniversary. Owned by brother-and-sister team Pat Ramshaw and Pam Makarewicz, Choice Cabinet has more than 30 years of customer service, remodeling experience and kitchen and bath design. The business is located at at 3893 Mid Rivers Pictured are Pat Ramshaw, Pam Makarewicz and Sandy Mall Drive in St. Peters. Ramshaw.


Larry Nordlof, has joined Thomas & Suit Homes as community sales manager for The Enclave at Sommers Pointe in St. Charles. A licensed Missouri Nordlof real estate broker, Nor-

dlof is a graduate of the University of Illinois and holds an MBA from the Keller Graduate School of Management and has been recognized for many of his achievements throughout his career.

PLACES USA Mortgage recently has celebrated the opening of its new location with a

Pictured is O’Fallon Family Eyecare owner Dr. Joseph Hegyi with friends, family and community members. Also in attendance were representatives from the O’Fallon Chamber of Commerce and the city of O’Fallon.

ribbon-cutting ceremony, celebrating its merger with Quest Mortgage Consultants. The business offers mortgage tools on the Internet and online shopping for loan programs. USA Mortgage is located at 8921 Veterans Memorial Parkway in O’Fallon. ••• O’Fallon Family Eyecare recently has celebrated its opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. It is located at 4142 Keaton Crossing Blvd., Suite 103, in O’Fallon. ••• Just Cruises, of St. Peters, recently has celebrated 20 years in business. Some of its many award-winning services include allinclusive and land-packaged vacations. ••• Rib City has announced that it will open its second location in Missouri. A family-

owned barbecue chain, Rib City serves barbecued meats, special sauces and complementary side dishes. Rib City will be located at 3891 Mid Rivers Mall Drive in St. Charles.

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30 I news I 



Art with spoons

Local artists sees flowers and bugs in utensils

them into different shapes to create flower petals. The petals are then welded onto rods for the stems. The idea for spoon flowers came after his daughter Sarah requested Farmer make flower centerpieces for her wedding reception. The entire family took part in the fourmonth project, collecting flatware, cutting spoons and creating more than 300 flowers for the wedding. But that was just the beginning. Farmer has also completed a bird sculpture made almost completely out of spoon handles. And he uses broken spoons for ears on his four-legged critter sculptures. Spoons are just one piece of his art. His shop—located in a garage behind his home—is filled to the brim with unique items to build his art. Rusted sickles, old pulleys and lanterns hang from the ceiling. Joseph Farmer Dozens of hammers, pipe wrenches, metal rods and old railroad spikes are organized By Amy Armour Spoons are not just for eating at Joseph along the wall. Farmer, a former welder, can see a use for Farmer’s house. Spoons are just one item the St. Charles these unique items — many of which have artist utilizes to create his unique art sculp- been tossed in the trash. Through the years, tures. Farmer cuts spoons in half and welds he has collected the items from junk yards,

flea markets and old construction sites. “Collecting the items is the easy part,” Farmer said. “My art is a building process. I’m taking an already made object, like a sickle, a shovel or a pipe wrench and making something from it. When I see a shovel, I see the neck of a bird. I add some legs, pliers for the head, and strips of metal for the plumage.” And getting the needed utensils is just as interesting. When TWA was closing down, Farmer looked into purchasing the company’s spoons. What you bought ended up being 6 tons of utensils. So today, as his art is inspected a bit closer, sure enough, the letters “TWA” can be found on many petals, stems, legs - you name it. Farmer started welding in the 1970s, working as a technician for a local hydraulics company. He turned his skills as a welder into a medium to create his art. “My work is a part of me and my ability to manipulate metal and add an everyday item to it,” Farmer said. One of his first pieces of art included a plant stand made from a worn out hydraulics pump. It was a gift to his girlfriend Bridget—now his wife of more than 30 years. He has created birds, praying mantis, bugs, and turtles—to name a few—from the pieces in his shop. In 1981, Farmer said he found some success in his art, but with an infant at home

and another child on the way, art took a backseat. With a busy career which required a lot of travelling, Farmer wouldn’t come back his passion for 20 years. In 2001, Farmer decided to start working on his art again. He had the opportunity to sell some of his pieces at Bluestem Missouri Craft in Columbia, Mo. In 2005, he entered his first art show in decades—and won an award of merit. “I’m always trying to come up with something a little different,” Farmer said. “It’s very satisfying to visualize something and then create a tangible object.”

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Barnes-Jewish St. Peters Hospital ranked among best in metro area Barnes-Jewish St. Peters Hospital has been ranked No. 8 in the St. Louis metropolitan area in U.S. News Media & World Report’s 2011-12 Best Hospitals rankings, available online at The rankings, annually published by U.S. News for the past 22 years, will also be featured in the U.S. News Best Hospitals guidebook, which will go on sale Aug. 30. The latest rankings showcase 720 hospitals out of about 5,000 hospitals nationwide.

Each is ranked among the country’s top hospitals in at least one medical specialty and/or ranked among the best hospitals in its metro area. “We are extremely proud, for the second time, to have achieved this top-ranking honor at Barnes-Jewish St. Peters Hospital. The employees and physicians strive to deliver excellent care to our patients and this recognition further demonstrates that commitment,” said John Antes, hospital president.

I news I 31

A special online collection of helpful columns from local experts.


Ask the Expert


nomenon has been moving from west to east for years. It has been considered primarily a rural problem – and it still is – but, looking at a map his staff produced, meth is coming to town. “One meth lab we busted in Wentzville was three houses down from a law enforcement officer’s house,” Neer said. Then, pointing to a star hovering over the Augusta area, he said, “That star represents six meth labs.” The stars get thicker along I-70 and practically become a solid mass in eastern St. Peters and along Hwy. 94 in St. Charles. “The products they use to make meth are so combustible and the labs are so portable that a truck fire last year out on Hwy. 94 turned out to be from an explosion – they were mixing in the truck and it caught fire while they were driving down the road,” Neer said. Fires and explosions from meth labs have become so frequent that nearly half the victims being treated in local burn units are a result of meth-making gone bad, Copley said. And meth labs still continue to flourish. “Last year, we busted 90 meth labs all year,” Neer said. “This year, half way through the year, we’re already at 98.” While the various chemicals that are mixed can vary, the one ingredient absolutely necessary to make meth is pseudoephedrine. It is obtained by meth manufacturers who contract with individuals called ‘Smurfs’ – the little blue animated civilization that lived by gathering things. Smurfs gather pseudoephedrine by making the rounds of pharmacies purchasing the maximum amount of pseudoephedrine products currently allowed by law. They in turn sell the pseudoephedrine they gather to the meth makers – or exchange the pills for the finished product. The effort to curb ‘Smurfing’ – and, thus, cutting off the primary ingredient needed

to make meth – is best achieved by returning to the former practice, prior to 1976, of requiring a prescription to purchase pseudoephedrine for legitimate treatment of allergies and sinus infections, according to Neer and Copley and the host of experts they brought before County Council. The main argument against making pseudoephedrine available by prescription only is that it will inconvenience the elderly and working parents. Neer said he recently visited a Walgreens. “There were two rows of meds,” he said. “Each row was 45 feet long, seven shelves high – over 300 products in all of OTC cold, sinus and allergy medications.” Copley said, “If a pseudoephedrine product is absolutely necessary and you have a relationship with a primary care physician – and if you don’t you should – it is normally just a matter of a phone call and they will electronically submit your prescription to the pharmacy of your choice.” “If you don’t have a doctor, there are urgent care clinics in practically every strip mall and shopping center in St. Charles County,” Neer said. “It might be a little inconvenient at first but really, not that big of a deal. Not when you consider the consequences of not doing this at all.” Results are the only things that count in law enforcement. Neer contacted sheriff’s departments in different counties and states some with E-Tracking, some with prescription-only pseudoephedrine availability. “The fact is, E-Tracking isn’t working and OTC pseudoephedrine bans are,” Neer said. Neer and Copley prevailed, the County Council, a bit reluctantly, but unanimously granted the request. Now, County Counselor Joann Leykam said the bill would likely go into effect by the end of August. “If Steve (County Executive Ehlmann) signs it today, it’s published in a legal newspaper three days afterwards and goes into effect 31 days from publication.”

w.N ew Availa sm ble ag exclu azi sive ne ly a Ne t: tw ork





This month’s columns feature:

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Murphy Giegerich CM Instructor, Service Manager Indoor Comfort Team

DenTAl heAlTh AnD your peTs

Dr. Stacey Wallach Town & Country Veterinary Hospital

eDuCATionAl beneFiTs oF MusiC lessons

James Wells Music School Director Midwest Music Conservatory

32 I events I 



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636-329-8184 • 804 O'Fallon Road • Weldon Springs (O'Fallon & Hwy. 94) 755 Friedens Road • St.Charles • 636-925-1065 Visit us on Facebook • Twitter us at WeLoveDeters

Com mu n it y Event s TRIVIA NIGHT The O’Fallon Chamber of Commerce will host its second annual Trivia Night at 7 p.m., Fri., Sept. 9, at O’Fallon Civic Hall, 305 Civic Park Drive.  Doors open at 6:15 p.m. and trivia starts at 7 p.m. The cost is $20 per person and includes mulligans, beer and soda. Participants may also bring in their favorite snacks and drinks. There will be cash prizes, 50/50 drawings and special games. To reserve a spot, visit or call 240-1818.

free. The general public is also welcome and admission is $80 per person. Advance registration is required. For more information, email Kerin Abbey at  kabbey@ or call the EDC at 441-6880 ext. 230.  ••• “LinkedIn Basics, Tips & Tricks” will be held from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Thurs., Aug. 18, in Loft 5 at Morning Star Church, 1600 Feise Road in Dardenne Prairie. The seminar is free and open to the public. For more information, call 314-799-9292.



“Crossroads Career Network: Searching” will be held from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Thurs., Aug. 4, in Loft 5 at Morning Star Church, 1600 Feise Road in Dardenne Prairie. The seminar is free and open to the public. For more information, call 314799-9292. ••• “How to Guide: Turning Ideas into Reality” will be held from 9 a.m. to noon on Thurs., Aug. 11, at Old Hickory Golf Club, 1 Dye Club Drive in St. Peters. The interactive presentation will give participants an introduction to the methodical process of action planning for new ideas using the concept of “Fail Fast, Fail Cheap.”  Alliance members may attend the event for

A Brain Injury Support Group will meet at 7:30 p.m. on Thurs., Aug. 11, at SSM St. Joseph Health Center. Meetings are sponsored by the Brain Injury Association of Missouri. For more information, call 314423-6442. ••• Heart Screenings will be held from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Fri., Aug. 12, in the St. Peters Room at SSM St. Joseph Health Center. The full heart health screening provides your total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, blood glucose, body fat analysis and blood pressure for $15. To register, call 866-SSM-DOCS. ••• A Life After Breast Cancer support

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group will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Tues., Aug. 16, in the Community Education Room at SSM St. Joseph Hospital West in Lake Saint Louis. This free program provides education and support for breast cancer survivors. A light dinner is provided. To RSVP, email janice_young@ and write LABC in the subject line, or call 498-7923. ••• A Diabetes Support Group will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Tues., Aug. 23, at the H.W. Koenig Medical Building at SSM St. Joseph Hospital West. Hear from experts to learn how to better manage diabetes and enjoy a healthier life. The support group is free. To RSVP, call 625-5447. ••• A Tobacco Free for Life Support Group will be held from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Mondays in August at St. Peters City Hall. The free support group is designed for those who want to quit smoking, as well as those who have successfully quit. Discover more information about how to quit, or find reassurance and support. To register, call 947-5304. ••• A weekly Cancer Survivor’s Support Group will be held from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Wednesdays in August at the H.W. Koenig Medical Building at SSM St.

Joseph Hospital West. The support group is free. To RSVP, call 755-3034.

QUILT SHOW A Quilt Show and Kids’ Quilting Workshop will be held from 10 a.m. to noon on Sat., Aug. 6, at the historic Heald Home in Fort Zumwalt Park in O’Fallon. View locally-made quilts in a variety of styles at the UMC Quilt Show and Sale. Kids are invited to participate in the Kids’ Quilting Workshop at 10 a.m., 10:45 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. The cost is $5 and advanced registration is required. To register, call 379-5614 or email mseymour@

RACE O’Fallon’s ninth annual Fall Fest 5K Fun Run will start at 7:30 a.m. on Sat., Oct. 8, outside O’Fallon Municipal Centre. The route will follow a marked circuit through the neighborhood and return to the start/ finish line at City Hall. Early registration before Sept. 6 is $15 per person. The race is open to all ages, and awards will be given to the top three male and female runners overall, the top three male/female runners in each division, and first, second and third place prizes for the best family-


NEWSMAGAZINENETWORK.COM friendly costumes worn by participants. Visit O’Fallon’s Parks and Recreation Web site for complete race information.

and the public is invited to attend, take pictures, receive signed autographs from BIGFOOT’s driver. For more information, call 1-800-334-5036.  



An Iris Auction will be held from noon to 2 p.m. on Sat., Aug. 6, at the American Legion Hall, 504 Hwy. 61 in Wentzville. Members will be digging specialty Iris from their gardens and Mid-America Garden Iris from Oregon will also be available. Lunch will be provided for this free event. To RSVP, call Elaine Fix at 314277-6186.

“The Biggest Loser” will search for contestants from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sat, Aug. 13 at Chesterfield Mall. Individuals and teams of two who have at least 85 lbs. to lose are encouraged to apply for the new season, which will begin airing this January. Casting producers are looking for outgoing and charismatic teams of two and individuals who have the personality, desire and competitive edge. Candidates must be at least 18 years of age and legal residents of the United States. Candidates are encouraged to bring a nonreturnable photo. Casting call applications will be provided on-site. For more information, visit www.thebiggestlosercasting. com.

BIGFOOT VISIT BIGFOOT, the original monster truck, will visit St. Peters from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Fri., Aug. 5 and from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sat., Aug. 6 at Plaza Tire located at 7878 Mexico Road. Admission is free

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County Health Dept. gets on board with Missouri Breastfeeding Month A recent survey ranked Missouri among the states with the highest percentage of obese residents. Proper nutrition — beginning with infants and young children — is a great way to counteract the growing trend of obesity in the United States.  As a result, the St. Charles County Division of Public Health’s Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program offers developing families guidance on proper nutrition at no cost. The WIC Program presents pregnant and breastfeeding women, postpartum women, infants, and children up to age 5 with specific supplemental foods, nutrition education and counseling, health screening, and referrals to health care. In addition, the program provides support to women with newborn or infant children on the benefits of breastfeeding. Statistics show that women who participate in the WIC Program have fewer low-birth-weight babies, experience fewer infant deaths, and eat healthier. The WIC program, which is funded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is based at the Division of Public Health office at 1650 Boone’s Lick Road in St. Charles.  Participants must meet income guidelines and be determined by health professionals to be at a nutritional risk. Those interested in applying for WIC or are in need of more information should contact the WIC office at 949-7402 or visit  In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, the St. Charles County

Department of Community Health and the Environment is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability. To accentuate its positive impact on the growth of young families, Missouri has declared August to be “Breastfeeding Month.” Doctors consider a mother’s milk to be the best food for her baby because it provides all of the essential nutrients a baby needs to grow and to enhance brain development.  As the nutritional composition of breast milk changes with a baby’s nutritional needs and provides necessary antibodies that protect against infection, breastfed babies have a lower rate of sickness, which results in fewer expensive doctors’ visits and less lost work for parents. Mothers also gain the benefits of bonding more closely with their child, improved bone density, and a reduced risk for breast, uterine and ovarian cancers. For more benefits of breastfeeding, visit babies/breastfeeding/index.php. The St. Charles County Department of Community Health and the Environment is committed to the protection and enhancement of health and the quality of life for all members of our community.  For information on programs offered and to discover ways the department assists the community, please visit or call 949-7400.

I events I 33

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Window films beat the heat, spruce up the home By SARAH WILSON The summer months are hot, and the air conditioning bills are high, but window films can help. And not only to they reduce cooling costs, they also can provide a new look for any room. A window film is a thin, transparent sheet that can act as a supplement to the inside of a window and change the amount of heat and light that transmits into the home. Film coatings have the ability to control and reduce heat, reduce radiant heat loss, provide shatter resistance, help prevent furniture from fading, create privacy, create a unique appearance and reduce glare – all through a nearly effortless transformation. Janell Santo, president of Pro-Tint, Inc. in Eureka, recommended three different types of window films: solar, security, and decorative. Solar films act as a solar “blanket” for windows, keeping the interior cool in the summer and warm in the winter, according to Robert Kersten, president of Quality Glass Tinting in Valley Park. He said he is constantly scanning the globe for new products and techniques in the solar film industry. “(Solar films) take out more heat than light and UV rays, so they look natural in the glass and you really can’t tell they’re in there, because they don’t look dark,” Kersten said. “They’re also great for renewable energy.” Santo said with solar films, there are a variety of colors from which to choose.

“But you don’t necessarily have to have color to get protection,” Santo said. “A lot of times, in residential homes, people are asking to control temperature and fading, but they don’t want to have to change the look of the glass.” Security films can be used in any residential or commercial property and offer extra protection by holding the glass together in the event that it would break, such as during bad weather conditions or a break-in. “It doesn’t keep glass from breaking, but it holds it together and holds it in the frame if it did,” Santo said. The most popular film available, Kersten said, is decorative film, which offers endless opportunities for creativity and function and are a great way to simultaneously achieve privacy and enhance aesthetics. Santo said different colors can be cut in and laminated together to form an underwater scene. “They are films that can be printed upon,” Santo said. “So you can take a colorless film and then print graphics and pictures on it, and they look transparent and watercolor-like – kind of like a negative.” Endless possibilities allow for decorative glass to be textured, patterned, colored and stained. “Those are used primarily on windows for when you need privacy but still want light coming in, for instance, for the bathroom, side lights by the front door, garage windows or basement windows,” Santo said.




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Choosing siding By SARAH WILSON New siding will go a long way in updating a home’s exterior, but homeowners should be aware that not all sidings are created equal. Jake Parker, of J & J Siding and Windows in Chesterfield, said when it comes to what kind of siding homeowners should choose – whether building a new house or updating an old one – there are three main options, and they differ in the areas of quality, maintenance and durability. “It all depends on what the homeowner is specifically looking for,” Parker said. He said the first type, which has been around for quite awhile, is the basic vinyl siding, which requires little maintenance. “Of the three main options, basic vinyl siding is probably the one that doesn’t look as good as the others,” Parker said. “However, if it is installed properly, it will look nice and hold up well.” The second option is insulated vinyl siding, which is substantially more energy efficient and more durable than basic vinyl siding. According to Parker, it also tends to

look better. “In my experience,” her said, “insulated vinyl siding is probably the majority of what we do at this point.” The third option is fiber cement siding, which Parker said when done properly is the option that looks the best. However, achieving that look comes at a cost. “It definitely requires the highest maintenance of the three,” Parker said of fiber cement siding. “It’s also the costliest and has the least amount of warranty protection. It’s the kind of thing that if a homeowner doesn’t mind the maintenance or is only looking for something that is going to make their home look good for a few years and not going to have to deal with problems or painting down the road, then it’s a good option. So there is definitely a trade-off there.” No matter what type of siding the homeowner chooses, how it is installed is critical to how it will perform, Parker said. “The product is very important, but installation is just as important, if not more so,” he said.

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Siding solution When unsightly mold makes its home on your home’s siding, the best way to remove it is with a solution containing 30 percent vinegar and 70 percent water, according to Bill Penick, president of Penick Construction. “Some homes never see sunlight, so when that happens you have the opportunity for mold to grow there,” Penick said. “The nice thing about vinyl is that you don’t ever have to paint it, making it really easy to just spend a few hundred dollars every couple of years and have it professionally cleaned with a power washer – and it will always look new.”

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Any A/C Unit Not to be combined. Present at estimate to qualify Expires 8-16-11

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36 I decor I 




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Tackling gutter clutter By SHANNON F. IGNEY Clearing gutters of summer debris will ensure function and keep the roof and windows in working order. If gutters are left clogged, the slightest amount of precipitation can force water flow out of the gutter, down the exterior walls and into the window openings or basement of a home. Downspouts also should be cleared of debris and checked to make sure water flow is directed away from the home toward appropriate drainage. To clear gutters often is a two-person job – one to clean and one to hold the ladder. Or, as is the case for many homeowners, the physical roofline or slope of the home prohibits access with a common household ladder and requires professional help. Oftentimes, once the gutters are cleared of debris, a grimy, black film remains. The most effective way to remove dirt and grime is with a power washer or soapy water and a lot of elbow grease. Of course, as fall is in full swing, nature will find a way to fill the gutters again. To fight nature’s wrath and to keep gutters functioning properly on a more permanent

basis, homeowners can attach mesh netting to the top of the gutter, which will provide a barrier to the clutter while allowing for effective water flow. A one-time solution is a permanent lid. Mike Brazel, general manager for Gutter Helmet, said small debris is what usually clogs the gutter, but with the right product, homeowners never will have to clean gutters again. “A simple solution is the Gutter Helmet, a maintenance-free solution that works through surface tension and is going to keep debris out,” Brazel said. “It’s a oneshot deal. You do it, it’s done.”

Research before re-roofing


Best Price, Best Service Guaranteed!

By SARAH WILSON When buying a new home or refurbishing an old one, the homeowner has more to consider when purchasing roofing shingles than one might expect. Color, shape, size, life cycle, cost, convenience of installation and quality are only a few shingle traits to research. Years ago, shingles were limited to the basic three-tab shingles and architectural shingles in limited colors. Now with a new generation of roofing products, shingle manufacturers realize the aesthetic value of shingle styles and offer products for any type of house, allowing homeowners to get creative and explore their options. Many roofing materials are now greener and created from recycled products, according to Lee Allen, president of Allen Roofing & Siding, which has been in business since 1972. When deciding whether to get composite shingles or architectural asphalt, Allen said there are a few things to think about. Composite products have a Class 4 impact rating, which means that they are durable and that hail has little effect on them. “They have the beauty and look of natural slate or cedar shake but are made of recycled materials,” Allen

Composite slate shingles, completed by Allen Roofing & Siding. Photo credit Arteaga Photos

said. “They also are more user friendly to install and repair, if necessary.” However, architectural asphalt shingles also come in a wide array of styles and colors, with heavier weight and higher wind resistance than the basic three-tab shingle. They will never rust or bend. “They are aesthetically pleasing and have better curb appeal,” Allen said. No matter what type of shingle a homeowner chooses, Allen said choosing the right professional to install it is just as important. “Your roof protects your greatest investment – your home,” Allen said. “It is important that a qualified professional properly install it.”



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The Babylon’s servies ‘a little bit of everything’ at penny-pinching prices By SUZANNE CORBETT After three years in operation with a strategy of more than affordable pricing, The Babylon’s co-owner Paul Wegeng is taking steps to expand. He said business is brisk, and an expansion is necessary to accommodate his non-smoking customers. “We start getting really busy about 5, and we stay busy all night because we’re very affordable,” Wegeng said. “We have 99-cent half-pound burgers and wings for 45 cents. We also have all-you-can-eat specials, like fried chicken on Wednesdays.” The Babylon’s large dining area is built around its threesided bar – the focus of the dining area. The menu features fairly priced classic pub grub fare, with appetizers and sides ranging from an order of fries to Cajun Shrimp Kabobs. Popular appetizer picks are The Babylon’s classic nachos, dressed similar to an old-time taco and covered with seasoned ground beef, four cheeses, tomato, lettuce, salsa and sour cream, and the The Buffalo Chicken Dip, which is an unusual offering not often found on menus. It is never too hot for hot wings, which are cooked four The Babylon 4744 Mid Rivers Drive • Cottleville (636) 219-6607 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sun.; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Mon.; 11 a.m. to 1:30 a.m., Tues. – Sat.

ways, mild to “Smack Yo Mama” hot. However, if looking for something cooler on a 100-degree day, diners are encouraged to check out the salads, including a small side salad, designed as an accompaniment to an entrée, and larger entree salads, such as the Taco, Chef and Chicken Caesar. Occupying the lion’s share of menu space are burgers and sandwiches. A dozen different over-stuffed sandwiches offer selections from grilled or fried chicken combinations, ranging from the Buffalo-style Chicken and BLT to the Reuben or The Babylon Club, which layers roast beef, turkey, ham, bacon, cheese, lettuce and tomato. Beyond the 99-cent burger, The Babylon’s designer burgers, such as the Frisco Melt, Chili Cheese or Mushroom Swiss, are well worth the slightly higher price. Pizzas are Live music and delicious cuisine encompass an evening at The Babylon. a lunch to late-night specialty and include The Babylon’s custom combos, such as the Taco, Hawaiian or “Build Your Own” pizza with unlimited and pizza. toppings. Adding to The Babylon’s good times mantra is live Entrees are served with a side duo, creating a full deal music, which is hosted every Saturday night. Also, for meal where comfort food rules. Center of the plate fea- those who want to take their party on the road, they can tures are Chicken Fried Steak, Barbeque Pork Ribs and check out The Babylon’s party bus, which is available to Adult Mac & Cheese loaded with chicken and bacon. rent for excursions around town or into the neighboring There also is a kids menu and a Sunday Brunch, serving wine country. both breakfast and lunch items, including diverse yet deli“We have a little bit of everything while keeping it inexcious fare, such as biscuits and gravy, corned beef, pastries pensive,” Wegend said.

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3072 Winghaven Blvd.





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Need Help?


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MIDRIVERS cLaSSIFIEDS Assisted Care A preferred home care choice since 1987. College degreed professionals provide care/ companionship. Why accept less? Competitively priced options. Care managers and clinical staff available. Bonded & insured. AAA screened. Call Gretchen at StaffLink (314) 477-3434. Classifieds 636.591.0010 Email: classifieds@

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Hauling St. Charles Junk is your local bulk and container service company catering to the St. Charles and surrounding counties. We haul it all... basement and garage cleanouts, appliances, yard waste, construction debris, and NOW OFFERING CONTAINERS! For the best service and pricing call St. Charles Junk at

Veterinary hospital in St. Peters looking for a friendly, outgoing individual to fill a part-time vet assistant/technician position. Experience required. Evenings and Saturdays required. Go to for details.

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Home Improvement P o w E r wA S H S o LU T I o N S House wash: one story includes vinyl siding, soffit, facia, gutters exterior, up to 1800sf for $135. Two story up to 2500sf for $175. Call 636-675-1850. BASEMENTS BY DESIGN - Finish basements. All basements include permits w/inspection. Free design consult w/bid. Dry wall repairs & handyman work. 25 yrs. experience. Insured. 636675-1850.


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Thomure Plumbing LLC Quality, Full Service Commerical & Residential since 1980. New Installation & Repair. Reasonable Rates. Call Mike today for a FREE ESTIMATE. (636) 262-6489 Classifieds 636.591.0010 Email: classifieds@

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